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  • Glucomannan causes obese women to lose 5.5 lbs in two months without dieting

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    Thursday, June 17, 2010 9:38 am Email this article
    People taking one gram (1,000 mg) of the dietary fiber glucomannan three times a day one hour before meals weighed 7 pounds less than people given a placebo after two months according to a 1984 study. Average weight loss after one month: 4.9 lbs

    The average weight loss after one month (four weeks) was 4.9 pounds in the glucomannan group compared to 0.4 pounds in the placebo group (Walsh et al, 1984).

    Glucomannan -5.5 lbs, placebo +1.5 lbs

    After two months the average weight loss was 5.5 pounds in the glucomannan group compared to a weight gain of 1.5 pounds in the placebo group (Walsh et al, 1984, Table 2, p. 291).

    This is a difference of 7 pounds between the groups (Walsh et al, 1984).

    Told not to change eating habits

    Patients were told not to change their eating habits.

    Glucomannan reduced total cholesterol 11%, LDL cholesterol 12%

    Patients taking glucomannan reduced total cholesterol by 11 percent (198 down to 176 mg/dl) and LDL cholesterol by 12 percent (125 down to 110 mg/dl).

    No change in HDL

    Levels of HDL cholesterol did not change.

    No change in HDL

    Triglycerides decreased by 16 mg/dl after one month in the glucomannan group compared to an increase of 19 mg/dl in the placebo group.

    After two months, triglycerides decreased 23 mg/dl in the glucomannan group versus an increase of 5 mg/dl in the placebo group (Walsh et al, 1984, Table 2, p. 291).

    Adverse effects: None

    No adverse effects were reported. The researchers noted that “Acceptance of the food supplement was very good… No adverse effects were reported in either… group.” (Walsh et al, 1984, p. 290).

    Relief from mild constipation

    Several patients taking glucomannan reported relief from mild constipation.

    Subjects: 20 obese women, 132-218 lbs

    The study involved 20 obese women defined as being more than 20 percent more than their ideal weight.

    The women ranged from 132 pounds to 218 pounds with the average weight being 184 pounds and were an average of 53 percent over their ideal weight.

    The study included 20 people weighing 132 to 218 lbs, averaging 53 percent over their ideal weight, who were given either 1 gram of glucomannan or a placebo 1 hour before each meal (3 grams/day).

    How it causes weight loss

    “Consumption of fiber has been shown to reduce the occurrence of obesity by acting as a bulking agent,” according to Walsh et al (1984, p. 289).

    “High dietary fiber is also reported to reduce caloric consumption, food ingestion rate, and nutrient absorption,” Walsh et al continued (1984, p. 289).


    “Although the number of subjects used in the this study was small, the results support the use of glucomannan food supplement for the purpose of weight reduction and reducing cholesterol in those who have high cholesterol,” the researchers concluded (Walsh et al, 1984, p. 292).


    Walsh D, Yaghoubian V, Behforooz A. Effect of glucomannan on obese patients: a clinical study. Int J Obes. 1984, 8(4):289-93.

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